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Copying letters to patients with cystic fibrosis (CF): Letter content and patient perceptions of benefit

Treacy, Katherine, Elborn, J. Stuart, Rendall, Jackie and Bradley, Judy (2008) Copying letters to patients with cystic fibrosis (CF): Letter content and patient perceptions of benefit. Journal of Cystic Fibrosis, 7 (6). pp. 511-514. [Journal article]

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URL: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/jcf

DOI: 10.1016/j.jcf.2008.05.007


Background: Copying letters involves generating an extra copy of all correspondence between healthcare professionals about the patient, to the patient.Aims: To determine if the letter content was meaningful to the patient and to establish patient perceptions of copying letters from outpatient clinic visits.Methods: To assess letter content, a copy of all outpatient clinic letters were collected during a one month period and each copy was assessed for the use of plain English using the Drivel Defence software. To establish patient perceptions, patients completed a questionnaire relating to the potential advantages and disadvantages of copying letters.Results: Eighty letters were assessed for content. 77/80 (96.3%) of the letters had ≥50% of sentences with b20 words. The mean (SD) sentence length was 15 (3) words. Abbreviations were minimal in most letters (71/80, 89%). Most letters explained the patient's clinical status in a meaningful way (76/80, 95%). Fifty patients completed a questionnaire. The large majority (46/50, 92%) “strongly agreed" or “agreed" that theyfelt more involved by receiving a copy. Most patients (48/50, 96%) would rather receive a copy with 40/50 (80%) reporting advantages.Conclusion: Copying letters is well received amongst patients with CF, with numerous advantages and few disadvantages reported.

Item Type:Journal article
Keywords:Copying letters, Cystic , Letter content, Perception of benefit
Faculties and Schools:Faculty of Life and Health Sciences
Faculty of Life and Health Sciences > School of Health Sciences
Research Institutes and Groups:Institute of Nursing and Health Research > Centre for Health and Rehabilitation Technologies
ID Code:10119
Deposited By: Professor Judy Bradley
Deposited On:29 Jan 2010 12:43
Last Modified:07 Apr 2014 13:18

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